Praying All the Time
Pray in the Spirit at all times in every prayer and supplication. To that end keep alert and always persevere in supplication for all the saints. – Ephesians 6:18 (NRSV)
My friend and fellow UCC pastor Rev. Micah Bucey writes “tiny prayers.” He shares them on Twitter. They’re short and random. And every time I read them, I think “Wow. I could never write such a great prayer.”
I’m intimidated by prayer. I want it to be neat and tidy with words that make sense. But most of the time, I don’t have words. I have a mix of feelings, or other times there’s nothing there.
If we are to pray “at all times,” we have to allow ourselves some run-on sentences and messy thoughts. Our whole lives are lived as a big, giant messy prayer. Sometimes within that, we need to pray the words that others write. (Thank God for tiny prayers written by friends!) Sometimes we have to sit with ourselves and God in silence. And sometimes we have to live out the prayer in our actions. The desire to pray is itself a prayer, and sometimes we live out the prayer in our actions. And that’s enough.
Let the tiny prayers, the big messy prayers, the silent yearning prayers, and the in-action prayers be enough, God—for you and for me.
Ann is co-pastor of the Greenpoint Reformed Church in Brooklyn (UCC/RCA) and Chaplain for the Fire Department of the City of New York.